J$4.7million State-of-the-Art Lab for Top School
Kingston, Jamaica; January 6, 2011 – Campion College alumni and founding partners of the groundbreaking investment firm DB&G, Peter Bunting, M.P., Christopher Dehring and Senator Mark Golding, officially opened a state-of-the-art science lab named in their honour at their alma mater yesterday (Wednesday, January 5). The lab, named the DB&G Integrated Science Lab, cost some J$4.7million to be renovated and stocked with the latest technology and science apparatus and will serve the 700 1st to 3rd Form students at the school.
“The DB&G Integrated Science Lab is an extremely important project for Campion College,” said Principal Grace Baston at the opening ceremony. “Not only is it a vast improvement on the original lab which, like the others in our Science Wing, had not been renovated in 50 years, but it has also provided a model for the future of the school’s learning spaces.”
Mrs Baston said that the project would not have been possible without the leadership gift of Messrs Bunting, Dehring & Golding of US$45,000 (J$3.8million), and she thanked them for their donation and immediate willingness to assist the school. She also thanked the group of supporting donors for their valuable contributions to the project: The Burgess Family, GraceKennedy Foundation, Dr Jeffrey Meeks, Ex-o-Pest Ltd, Peter Reid, Dr Michelle Foote, Gregory Worton, and Denise and Neville Lyn-Fatt.
In his remarks, Mr Bunting hailed Campion for providing him with an excellent secondary education shaped by the tenets of social justice, which the Jesuit founders of the school instilled in the students. He cited his years at Campion as ones where many lifelong friendships were established, such as with his fellow donors and business colleagues, Mr Dehring and Senator Golding. Mr. Bunting and Mr. Dehring are members of the graduating class of 1977, while Senator Golding attended Campion from 1976-79 before completing his studies overseas. In 2009, the trio was inducted to the Campion College Alumni Association Hall of Fame for their many individual and joint contributions to business and the public sector.
Mr Bunting also congratulated the school and its teachers on their outstanding academic record throughout the years, noting in particular Campion’s dominance in the sciences at both the CAPE and CSEC levels. Based on new data available from the Caribbean Examinations Council for the 2010 CSEC and CAPE examinations, Principal Baston confirmed that Campion had more students placed in the top ten performers in each subject than any other school in Jamaica as well as the Caribbean.
In 2010, Campion students earned three of the top overall regional CAPE awards: Sharlaynne Waller for Natural Sciences; Andre Bascoe for Foreign Languages; and Aston Hamilton for Computer Sciences. In 2010, five out of seven Jamaica Scholarships were also awarded to Campionites and two Rhodes Scholarships (Jamaica and Caribbean) for a total of 15 in 50 years. Campionites have also excelled in the sciences overseas, among them Joel Sadler, a member of the team of inventors of the Jaipur Knee, which was named one of the Top 50 inventions of 2009 by Time Magazine.
The DB&G Lab is part of the first phase of the school’s ten-year Vision 2020 Campaign. In this first phase, the school has set out to renovate two junior science labs and build Jamaica’s first modern library media centre. Mrs Baston said that the Campaign, under the leadership of alumnus Andrew Mahfood, has come extremely close to its initial fundraising goal of US$700,000 and that an announcement of its completion is expected shortly.
ABOUT CAMPION COLLEGE
With a student enrolment of 1450, Campion College has been awarded the Top CSEC & Top CAPE School trophies over a number of years based on its examination results and continues to see improvements in these results. Thirty-five per cent of Campion’s incoming students are from primary schools and, like those from preparatory schools, they are among the top GSAT performers in the island.
Campion was founded by the Jesuits (the Society of Jesus, a Roman Catholic religious order of priests) in the 1940s. It was originally a small private preparatory boarding school for boys named Campion Hall. The high school, Campion College, was established in 1960 and was initially a private school for boys, which started with 105 students. A Jesuit desire to include students, who could not afford private education, led to various attempts by the school to render it grant-aided (a public high school subsidized by the Government), which was achieved in 1976. Campion also became co-educational in 1976 when the school merged with Sts. Peter and Paul High School for Girls. 2010 marked the 50th anniversary of the school.